Teen Thrive Earth Fest, Social Media & Green Teens

teenthrive.jpgYouth media springs into action in this season of growth and green! Earth Day Network has teamed with popular virtual world Habbo, to create project Green Teen, complete with “Green Furni” to decorate teens’ online virtual living rooms and encourage eco-awareness within their online community.

In the real world, new online teen community TeenThrive hosts a jam-packed EarthFest with cool solar car races, media screenings of this 12-minute film, An Ocean Legacy, panelists and eco-reps from over a dozen orgs like ForestEthics, on April 29th, a week AFTER Earth Day! If you’re from California…spread the word!

Founder Rob Franklin is using the event to kick off a “webolution” challenging youth 13-17 to make a difference using a platform described as “MySpace with a social conscience.”

His new venture empowers the next generation of conscious leaders, using technology and the internet as a tool for change. (I first met Rob at the Craigslist Foundation Bootcamp where we aligned wholeheartedly on media’s opportunity to mobilize youth, encouraging social entrepreneurs.)

Shaping Youth is definitely watching this innovative hybrid enterprise, for TeenThrive enables kids to “Do Good Stuff” using a visionary social networking model.

Their parent company, FamilyThrive, offers an online scholarship competition, where teenagers and young adults make money for college as they design and carry out projects that change their communities and the world for the better. Sponsors can help kids grow into self-guided social entrepreneurs and teens are given the tools to make a difference in meaningful, sustainable ways. Here’s an example of one teen’s project.

Teens get to hub with like-minded souls, swapping ideas, posting their projects, goals, personal profiles, videos and such, as they earn points for hands-on actions they take to fulfill and sustain their individual projects.

Kids’ dreams turn into reality in manageable-sized chunks, while hooking teens on putting ‘planet ahead of profit’ for long term global change. Talk about a win-win!

He’s using a ‘for profit’ revenue model that flips the top down approach into a bottom up goal builder…Alternative. Innovative. Collaborative. And no doubt sustainable. It gets complex to explain, and I don’t want to foul it up, so here’s their site description:

“By funding the work it does for families through sponsorship, Google Adsense and targeted advertising, FamilyThrive raises awareness of excellent non-profits and global change movements, donates directly to charitable enterprises and provides scholarships to young people.

Teen and young adults enjoy the “Find The Winning Logo Game”—an interactive way to discover responsible local businesses and non-profit organizations while offering players a chance to win money for college. For business owners, it’s a super opportunity for conscientious companies to reach their audience in an unobtrusive but effective forum with an impressive return on investment.”

As for the “how-to” portion for teen projects…TeenThrive empowers kids to use their voice and find their passion, build a project team, get feedback, support, comments and tips from others while sharing their progress through text, photos and video.

Personally, I view TeenThrive & FamilyThrive beyond a socially conscious MySpace…

To me it seems like more of a mashup between the microfunding concept of Omidyar.net, the social media niche of Care2Connect, and the ad rev supported alliances of free social networking sites like Ning. It’s definitely a collaborative concept worth watching…

If I can swing it, I’ll try to get to their April 29th event myself, as it sounds like a funfest of positive energy.

It’s so encouraging to see such a bounty of media and marketing messages that are making a positive difference like this in this world.

As Earth Day edges closer, we’ll no doubt see even more teen eco-teams planting fresh seeds for the planet to flourish…like this new teen project, GreenScreenTV.

Got more? Send ’em to us! Meanwhile, here’s to media mobilization and youth energy!

Next week, “Green Media Movies” and a round-up of digital resources and activities for kids of all ages for EarthDay. Stay tuned! Get green!



  1. Hello,

    My name is Jay with Panthera Interactive. Panthera is a performance-based network based in Las Vegas, NV. The reason for my inquiry is I’m interested in talking with someone from your company about a potential Business Development opportunity. At Panthera, we have clients that are looking for teen traffic and when I came across your website I thought there would be a good fit. This could be a great opportunity for you to be able to monetize on your website traffic/membership. Please have someone contact me at their earliest convenience so we can discuss.

    Thanks for your time and I look forward to the possibility of working with you.

    * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

    Jay Thompson
    Manager of Publisher Recruitment
    Panthera Interactive, LLC

    Tel: 702.202.4740
    Fax: 760.295.9765

    Email: jay@pantherainteractive.com
    Web: http://www.pantheranetwork.com

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